Background: There has been little psychosocial research concerning men’s adaption to prostate cancer and treatment-related sexual dysfunction. Qualitative studies have explored men’s sense of self following treatment, but the data has yet to be synthesised.
Objective: To report a meta-synthesis of qualitative studies exploring men’s sense of masculinity following treatment for prostate cancer.
Interventions/Methods: Six databases were searched to identify relevant studies conducted and published between Jan 1990 and Aug 2016. Titles and abstracts were reviewed by two reviewers. Studies that met the inclusion criteria were selected and reviewed for quality. The extracted data was then synthesised.
Results: A total of 14 studies met the inclusion criteria and passed the quality assessment. The meta-synthesis found that men’s sense of masculinity diminished following treatment for prostate cancer. Impotence, incontinence, the loss of control and physical changes caused psychological stress. Underpinning these factors were cultural influences and dominant ideals of what it means to be a man.
Conclusions: Men had entrenched ideas about what manhood entailed. The review found that men’s sense of masculinity was diminished post treatment for prostate cancer. They felt that they could not exercise their manliness because of the side effects associated with prostate cancer treatment.
Implications for Practice: More support and communication throughout the process is required to better inform patients of the outcomes of treatment. Additionally, it would be beneficial to have open forums through which to encourage men to talk frankly about their masculine identities.
Worsley, Aaron James
Directorate of Learning ResourcesFaculty of Health and Life Sciences\Department of Nursing
Year of publication: 2017Date of RADAR deposit: 2017-03-29